InFARMation (and Beer!)
“Eating is an agricultural act” Wendell Berry, The Pleasures of Eating
Since January 2009, Friends of Family Farmers has hosted InFARMation (and Beer!) each month in Portland. This is an opportunity to bring the issues that Oregon family farmers face onto the radar of urban consumers and the community in general. The topic changes each month, but always focuses on the larger picture of the connection between food and farms in our state. When eaters connect with farmers, it makes our food web stronger and real changes in our local food system are possible. While these events occur monthly in Portland, we visit locations around Oregon for periodic localized InFARMations as well. See the full schedule of upcoming events below:
Portland: The second Tuesday of every month : Holocene, located at the corner of SE Morrison and SE 10th in Portland. Please note: Holocene does not have a street sign. They do have a fantastic sound and video system, a full bar, and serve food.
Bend: Third Tuesday Quarterly (November, February, May, August) at Broken Top Bottle Shop (1740 NW Pence, Suite 1). Fantastic craft beer selection and local food on the menu!
- 5:30-6:30 – Arrive, networking, enjoyment of food and beverages
- 6:30-8:00 – Speakers(s), Q & A
- 8:00-8:30 – Additional discussion, networking & enjoyment of food and beverages
InFARMation (and Beer!) is always free and open to the public, AND IT IS ALL AGES!
2015 InFARMation Schedule
September 8th: Portland: Get the Nerve to Preserve!: Preserving the bounty of Oregon’s harvest ensures access to nutritious, local products throughout the year. Canning, freezing, dehydrating, pickling, and fermenting techniques redirect excess produce from the fields to the pantry shelves. We will learn more about the nitty gritty of the processing, how to acquire the local bounty both in raw and preserved forms, and the rules and regulations governing the preservation methods. More information >>>
October 13th: Portland: Food Is Medicine: More info to come…
Previous 2015 InFARMation Topics:
August 18th: Bend: Water Scarcity and Growing Food in the High Desert: Water in the High Desert is never really abundant, but this year it’s more scarce than usual. This impacts our food system, how we use water as individuals, our lakes and rivers, and our recreation. To ensure river health, irrigation districts have decreased irrigation water levels this season. So, how do river managers integrate all of these needs, and how does that affect the food on our plate?
August 11th: Portland: The Soil Will Save Us: Thousands of years of poor farming and ranching practices—and, especially, modern industrial agriculture—have led to the loss of up to 80 percent of carbon from the world’s soils. That carbon is now floating in the atmosphere, and even if we stopped using fossil fuels today, it would continue warming the planet. Join us for a conversation with Kristin Ohlson, journalist and author of The Soil Will Save Us. More info>>>
July 14th: Portland: The Feed Your Food Eats: Ever think about the food that goes into the mouths of the food that goes into our mouths? In other words, just what do hogs and chickens and cows consume to keep them healthy and, in turn, us healthy? Sourcing organic, non GMO, and local livestock feed proves challenging for many Oregon producers. We will learn about the behind the scenes process of growing and concocting healthy livestock feed from the nutritionist, producer, and butcher perspectives. More information >>>
June 9th: Portland: Fill Your Freezer- The Value of Buying in Bulk: Bulk purchases of farm-direct meat, dairy, veggies, and value-added products benefit eaters and farmers alike. Whether transactions occur through individual or aggregate channels, there is inherent value to bulk sales. Panelists will discuss how they engage in these purchase programs, either from the farmer, broker, or eater perspective, and how the marvelous freezer makes it all possible. More info >>>
May 18th: Bend: Next Generation of Central Oregon Farmers: The farming landscape is changing, most notably with the demographics of farmers themselves. As the average age of farmers continues to rise (currently at 59 years old), barriers blocking younger farmers from gaining a foothold in the dirt are numerous. More Info >>>
May 12th: Portland: Edible Surplus in the Food Chain: Food waste composes the largest percentage of waste dumped into municipal landfills. That’s because nearly 40% of the food produced in the U.S. alone bypasses hungry mouths, and instead ends up rotting in landfills or decomposing in compost heaps. That 40% equates to 96 billion pounds of food with a net worth of approximately 165 billion dollars! These staggering numbers coexist with the fact that one in six Americans lacks a secure food supply, and this tragedy does not escape Oregon. More Info>>>
April 14th: Portland: Farm & Food Finance: Investing in Where You Live and What You Eat: Finding financing for a farm is one of the most challenging obstacles for agricultural entrepreneurs. We heard about progress in the farmer financing arena including creative and community-sourced capital solutions and other new tools like Aggie Bonds, the new state lending program FoFF helped enact through 2013 Legislature. Thanks to panelists Jared Gardner of Foss Road Beef, Ginger Edwards of North Fork 53, and Simon Love of Hatch. More Info>>>
March 10th: Portland: Get Involved! Local food, Sustainable Ag and the Power of Citizen Engagement in the 2015 Oregon Legislature: we learned about the family farm issues up before the Oregon legislature this session and tools for engagement from FoFF’s Policy Director, Ivan Maluski, Oregon Senator Michael Dembrow (District 43) and Farmer Michael Geubert of Terra Farma.
February 17th: Bend: Creative Strategies for Growing in the High Desert: We heard from farmers; Jimmy Sbarra of Volcano Veggies, an aquaponics operation; Jim Fields of Fields Farm and Jake Polvi of Bends’ Center of Sustainability; as well as Tom Bennett from the Deschutes Natural Resources Conservation Service.
February 10th: Portland: Farming with Horses: Giddy up! Before tractors, horses did it all. Nowadays, farming with horses is considered rare in the landscape of mechanized farming. We’ll hear from a panel of famers with a range of experience and a deep appreciation for this endangered craft. Our panel included farmers with a wide range of experience.
January 13th: Portland: Farm Direct Meat & Talking to Your Butcher: Our panel consisted of farmer Nathan Moomaw of Moomaw Family Farm who specializes in a grass-fed meat CSA; Butcher Zeph Shephard of Proletariat Butchery and author, farmer and sustainability consultant, Rebecca Thistlethwaite. We talked about buying bulk meat and CSA shares direct from farmers, the opportunities and limitations of USDA inspected vs Custom Exempt slaughter and much more.
Want to start an InFARMation Series in your neck o’ the woods? Email Leah for more information.